Sun, May 29, 2022


4% growth forecast as consumer spending, tourist arrivals show upward trend

The Finance Ministry predicts a 4-per-cent growth in Thailand’s gross domestic product (GDP) this year, fuelled by higher domestic spending and 7 million foreign tourists.

This forecast is based on the 1.2 per cent boost to the economy, as the last quarter of 2021 saw an estimated 0.9-1.3 per cent expansion, ministry spokesman Pornchai Theeravet, who also doubles as the Fiscal Policy Office director, said on Friday.

Thailand’s growth in the second half of last year was higher than expected as it was propelled by a jump in exports, the government’s stimulus measures, the private sector’s higher consumption and investment expansion, the official said.

The export sector grew by about 19 per cent last year, thanks mainly to the recovery of its trade partners, compared to a 6.5 per cent drop in 2020.

Also, the number of foreign arrivals after Thailand’s reopening was higher than expected, he said. Since reopening on November 1, the country has seen as many as 420,000 foreign arrivals compared to 180,000 in the previous year.

Pornchai said the easing of Covid-19 measures has also pushed up consumer spending, which should boost the Thai economy by about 3.5 to 4.5 per cent.

Consumption of the private sector is expected to grow 4.5 per cent year-on-year, while exports will expand 3.6 per cent.

The resumption of the Test & Go scheme for foreigners from February 1 is expected to attract as many as 7 million arrivals.

However, Pornchai pointed out that some factors could affect economic growth, such as more Covid-19 waves, fluctuations in global economy and finance, slow recovery of the labour market, disruption in supply chain and surge in the price of energy and crude oil.

Published : January 28, 2022